Have you ever felt so weary, depressed and worrisome that you just wanted to give up? I was there — about halfway through my 2 years of unemployment that started back in 2008. It wasn’t until I got the opportunity to work with a Christian life coach that I discovered my purpose in life. We determined that I was to use my God-given talents, skills and experience to help spread the Gospel. I was to be a sower of the Word and here I am. Since I started this blog and podcast, the Good News of the Salvation of Jesus Christ has reached over 170 countries around the world. Over 30,000 pages of this blog have been viewed. It’s all God’s doing for His Glory. I’m just one of the many voices crying in the wilderness.
In today’s story, we find our hero, Elijah, frightened, weary and dejected. What happened? He just managed to stand up to 850 prophets of Baal and Asherah and witnessed God’s power first hand. So, what went wrong? Let’s dig in…
1 Kings 19
When Ahab got home, he told Jezebel everything Elijah had done, including the way he had killed all the prophets of Baal. 2 So Jezebel sent this message to Elijah: “May the gods strike me and even kill me if by this time tomorrow I have not killed you just as you killed them.”
3 Elijah was afraid and fled for his life. He went to Beersheba, a town in Judah, and he left his servant there. 4 Then he went on alone into the wilderness, traveling all day. He sat down under a solitary broom tree and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life, for I am no better than my ancestors who have already died.”
5 Then he lay down and slept under the broom tree. But as he was sleeping, an angel touched him and told him, “Get up and eat!” 6 He looked around and there beside his head was some bread baked on hot stones and a jar of water! So he ate and drank and lay down again.
7 Then the angel of the Lord came again and touched him and said, “Get up and eat some more, or the journey ahead will be too much for you.”
8 So he got up and ate and drank, and the food gave him enough strength to travel forty days and forty nights to Mount Sinai (Horab), the mountain of God. 9 There he came to a cave, where he spent the night.
The Lord Speaks to Elijah
But the Lord said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
10 Elijah replied, “I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too.”
11 “Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there, the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave.
And a voice said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
14 He replied again, “I have zealously served the Lord God Almighty. But the people of Israel have broken their covenant with you, torn down your altars, and killed every one of your prophets. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me, too.”
15 Then the Lord told him, “Go back the same way you came, and travel to the wilderness of Damascus. When you arrive there, anoint Hazael to be king of Aram. 16 Then anoint Jehu grandson of Nimshi to be king of Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from the town of Abel-meholah to replace you as my prophet. 17 Anyone who escapes from Hazael will be killed by Jehu, and those who escape Jehu will be killed by Elisha! 18 Yet I will preserve 7,000 others in Israel who have never bowed down to Baal or kissed him!”
The Call of Elisha
19 So Elijah went and found Elisha son of Shaphat plowing a field. There were twelve teams of oxen in the field, and Elisha was plowing with the twelfth team. Elijah went over to him and threw his cloak across his shoulders and then walked away. 20 Elisha left the oxen standing there, ran after Elijah, and said to him, “First let me go and kiss my father and mother good-bye, and then I will go with you!”
Elijah replied, “Go on back, but think about what I have done to you.”
21 So Elisha returned to his oxen and slaughtered them. He used the wood from the plow to build a fire to roast their flesh. He passed around the meat to the townspeople, and they all ate. Then he went with Elijah as his assistant.1 Kings 19 NLT
Points to Ponder
- Elijah just experienced an awesome miracle from God against the prophets of Baal. It was a display of His power. Yet, Jezebel’s threat was enough to get him to flee.
- Fear overshadowed what Elijah knew to be true about the Lord.
- God had to remind him that he was never alone. He sent an angel to feed him. That was a pre-incarnate Jesus.
- Weariness makes us vulnerable. That’s when the devil tries to take advantage of you. That’s where he looks for the foothold. At that point, you have to put on the armor of God.
- We tend to look for God’s voice in the big things that happen in life. Storms, earthquakes, volcanoes, wildfires, pandemics, you name it. However, we’re looking in the wrong place.
- Elijah’s outlook had become negative because his up-look had become weak.
- As it turned out, God wasn’t done with Elijah yet. He gave him some new assignments. Life is way different when we’ve got something productive to do — a purpose.
- We are bombarded every second of every day with messages from all different types of voices. Some are good and some are evil. We need to quiet ourselves, slow down our pace, and listen for God’s still, small voice.
So, shut off your phone, put it down. Turn off your computer. Turn off the TV. Go for a walk by yourself. No music or podcasts, just you and God. He is here with us and He wants a relationship with YOU! Relationships require communication. You can talk — pray, but, every once in a while, you have to stop, shut up and listen.
Immanuel – God with Us
When Jesus’ birth was announced to Joseph in a dream, the angel told him…
“Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. 21 And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
22 All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet:
23 “Look! The virgin will conceive a child!Matthew 1:21-23 NLT
She will give birth to a son,
and they will call him Immanuel,
which means ‘God is with us.’”
6 So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”
7 He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9 After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. 10 As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. 11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”Acts 1:6-11 NLT
Consequently, Jesus didn’t leave us alone, He sent His Holy Spirit to be with everyone who accepts Jesus as their savior. We believers are never alone. The Holy Spirit in our hearts helps guide us in our daily lives.
The Holy Spirit isn’t some far-off entity. He’s available to you when you…
Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.
- Believe — have Faith — that Jesus is the Christ and He died taking your sins away forever and that He rose from the dead 3 days later.
- Repent of your sins — stop sinning! Do a complete 180 in your life and surrender your life to Him.
- Be Baptized — show the world and yourself that you have died to your old life and are born again in Christ.
- Receive the Holy Spirit in your heart.